Gwynn was one of the best pure hitters this writer has ever seen and he holds the same stature in the history of baseball. It's likely most would agree with that sentiment.
"Mr. Padre" Tony Gwynn dead at 54. Truly a great hitter. Lifetime .338 with 3,141 hits. Only 34 career games with 2 or more strikeouts. RIP
— Mark Campbell (@mscnewsman) June 16, 2014
Tony Gwynn finished his career with a .338 batting average, highest of any player who began play after 1939.
Sure, the Padres did get swept in that series, but there's not much shame in that considering the '98 Yankees were one of the greatest teams in Major League Baseball history.
Still, that didn't stop a great player from playing at an extraordinary level.
Gwynn hit an astounding .500 in that series (8-for-16) with one homer and three RBI. His homer in Game 1 of the series was his first in postseason play, and at the time it was huge as it gave the Padres a 4-2 lead in the contest.
MLB.com helps us remember Gwynn's home run in that game, which was smoked out of Yankee Stadium in a hurry:
Jack Curry of YES Network remembered that even Derek Jeter asked Gwynn for a private hitting tutorial during Game 3 of the '98 series. That just goes to show how respected Gwynn was in the batter's box:
— Jack Curry (@JackCurryYES) June 16, 2014
We can talk about all of his amazing accomplishments and all the great years Gwynn put into the game, but most of all he was a great human being and a true gentleman.
His work both on and off the field made him that much more of a special person and Gwynn will always be remembered as such by anyone who watched or knew him during his incredible life.
what is more crazy about tony gwynn's stats? His .338 career batting average or the fact that he only struck out 434 times in 9288 AB's!!
— Oppotaco (@OPPOTACO) June 16, 2014
Everyone at Sports Media 101 sends their condolences to the entire Gwynn family in this difficult time and they certainly have our prayers.Tags: 1998 world series, Baseball, Derek Jeter, MLB, New York, New York Yankees, San Diego Padres, tony gwynn